When you pick up the hoop, you connect to a community that spans the world. For a great majority of spinners, this community is a powerful and sustaining force. It includes not only hoopdance, but other flow arts as well–poi, staff , contact juggling, contact poi, flow wand, clubs, buugeng and Cyr Wheel— and touches many other movement art forms such as windstyle, Axis Syllabus, hip-hop dance, FiveRhythms, and bellydance. This vast and interlocking system provides support to spinning people everywhere: we talk online, we share flow and life experiences, we meet in person, we hold wonderful events all over the world where we stay up all night spinning things, dancing, and laughing. And we make friends for life.
Because of the uniqueness of this community and the self-evident importance of contributing to its sustenance, this page is dedicated to providing you links to a wide variety of external resources, all of which have directly nourished the development of Line&Circle by their teachings, their innovations, their friendship, their community leadership, their beautiful flow, or–most likely–some combination of all of these.
One of the most impressive features of the hoop and flow communities is the near-universal embrace of a cooperative rather than a competitive business model. Community is about connection and connection is about recognition of our commonality. Many of us who have practiced the flow arts for several years have learned that to preserve those most precious resources to be found within spin–our capacity to share space and resources, our willingness to recognize beauty in one another and in ourselves, our readiness to play and to welcome any stranger into our games– are those endowments by which we exercise and sustain our common humanity. And we all benefit.
Infinite Circles Community: This Facebook group gathers hoopers from all over the globe to share videos, stories, encouragement, and flow fun. Over 24,000 hoopers and growing! Join in and find hoopfriends in your area!
Flowmies of Earth: Another flow-based FB group where you can find your flow family.
Unity of the Hula-Hoopers: And yes! One more FB group for hoopers! Find these folks and get your hoop on!
HOW TO MAKE YOUR OWN HOOP:
Jason Unbound: The hoop community has benefited so much from this one website, forged back in the prehistoric time before online networks! Thank you, Jason, for the great community service you have offered.
Identi-tape: A hooper’s paradise of tape choices! These guys have been serving the hoop community for years–enter “hula hula” in the discount code box and get 10% off!– and we love them for it.
Fancy Tapes: For hoopers in the UK, we recommend this great tape vendor–also a dear hoopfriend!
TEDx TALKS BY HOOPERS:
There have already been three hoopdance-themed TEDx talks! They are both quite amazing, and highly recommended with several thousand thumbs-up by the entire hoop community:
and the inimitable Lisa Lottie
These are the hoopdancers who have most profoundly and directly influenced my own flow. My gratitude for these light-bringers is truly boundless.
Baxter: My first teacher, hoop brother, and cherished friend Jonathan Baxter of the HoopPath blazed the trail teaching hoopdance as a healing and meditative movement form. Baxter has brought so much joy, learning, and healing dance to so many of us, and continues to travel and teach widely, bringing his unique power to inspire to people all over the world. The whole hoop community is so profoundly grateful for you, Bax. Watch Baxter in flow.
Spiral: This stunningly beautiful dancer was the second hooper I ever saw, and I’m not sure I’ve ever gotten over it! There is no one on earth who can summon the kind of magic Spiral spins out of her formidable reserves of intelligence, training, energy, and creativity. Spiral in flow.
Brecken: Brecken Rivara, straight out of New Jersey, impacted the hoop world like a meteor when she arrived fully formed around 2008. A former “closet hooper,” Brecken has consistently reached out into the wild edges of this movement form, and by doing so beckons the rest of us to follow. We’re trying, Hon. Brecken in flow.
Sharna Rose: The world’s most creative hooper. Sharna has been dropping jaws since she first blasted upon the scene in 2007. Never content to rest on her laurels, Sharna pushes the boundaries of the hoopdance form ever farther into more and more thrillingly mind-bending nooks and crannies. We love her! Sharna in flow.
Beth Lavinder: I had the tremendous good fortune of hooping alongside this consummately talented dancer several times a week for four years in the HoopPath dojo. Her unique interpretation of this movement vocabulary, always crisp and clean like the lines of the buildings she designs, has breathed new life into my dance again and again. Thank you, Beth. Beth in flow.
Julia “Jewels” Hartsell: Also one of the first hoopdancers I ever saw, Julia’s wonderfully feminine grace shaped my sense of what was possible in the hoop from the beginning. She and Spiral innovated the breathtakingly lovely hoop practice of sustained spinning, which my inner Sufi embraced early on. I’m so grateful.
Anah “Hoopalicious” Reichenbach: Anah, of HoopRevolution, is widely acknowledged as the first dancer to embrace the big hoop as a form, waaaaaaay back in 1998. Anah was the first to angle hoop on purpose. Her contributions to the hoop community will never, ever be fully comprehended. Anah in flow.
Nick Guzzardo: No one knew what hit ‘em when this former competitive diver appeared in our midst in 2010. He is the most lovable human being anyone has ever met, and has taken the hoopworld by storm. You can see why: Nick in flow.
Tiana Zoumer: Once upon a time, on youtube, there was a striking young woman with wild maroon hair and a liiiiiiiiittle tiny hoop, and she blew the entire hoopworld away with her amazingly fast, crisp, and innovative work. Here she is, Tiana the Astonishing, today.
Caterina Suttin: This magic girl has gifted me with more insight than any other 21-year-old on the planet—past, present, and future! She is also a master wire-wrapper who only keeps exploding more fully into blossom, and must be seen to be believed.
Malcolm Stuart: One of the original NYC hoopers (circa 2000), Malcolm is one of the most enduring, passionately creative, and crushed-upon hoopers in the world. His artist’s eye is always finding new shape, negative space, color, and flair, and he brings it all into the hoop. Oh yeah–and he makes (meaning, PAINTS) his own costumes, too.
Khan Wong: Khan has been at the leading edge of the flow arts movement since we met him (on www.tribe.net, our now-defunct online networking site) in 2006. With his years of professional experience giving arts grants in the city of San Francisco, Khan early on noticed the potential of flow arts and object manipulation to expand into dance. By starting the San Francisco Flow Show in 2008, Khan has uniquely contributed to the flourishing of hoopdance as performance art. And he’s a stunning performer in his own right.
Emma Kerr, aka Kenna Hoops: This woman is brilliant. There’s just no other way to say it. We are so lucky she found hooping and found US! She’s hysterically funny (like all British people) and always coming up with new creative movement gems that she promptly turns right around into entertaining online classes on her site, Hooping Mad. And no one is more fun to watch.
Gail O’Brien: Gail is possibly the single most adored hooper in the modern world– and when she puts on her squirrel costume, well–all bets are off, my friend. It’s widely known that, being Irish, she’s not only funnier than all the English hoopers, she’s also just plain SEXIER. Celebrated all over the world for her chest rolls–I give you, Gail O’Brien.
Steve Bags: Who else could have pioneered POOPING (poi hooping) as a flow art? No one, my friends, other than Mr. Steve Bags. That’s who.
Newer flow artists who have profoundly inspired me are mostly on Instagram! Here is my personally curated list of IG accounts of my favorite NEW-school spinners:
This site would never, ever have happened without the creative collaboration of a rare group of exceptionally talented friends.
First and foremost among them is my primary dreamstorming partner, a woman of rare vision and insight, Jaguar Mary X. She slogged through the incredibly long and steeply curved trajectory of making online videos with me, and I will never find the words to equal my gratitude to her. The fact of the matter is, nobody else could (or would) have done it! She cheered me while shooting, helped me find exactly the right words and mood for everything I wanted to express, and then edited everything together with devastating style. As is her wont. Every time we get together, dreams are spoken aloud, and often find their way into the real world. I consider myself among the most fortunate to have her in my life. And she’s one hell of a hooper, too!
The stunning photographs that comprise the background of the site were all taken by my beloved friend Anna Blackshaw. Her photos and interviews have also appeared in The Sun Magazine, the one-of-a-kind publication where I worked for several years. Anna and I had such a wonderful time making these photos in Boulder, Colorado and Saxapahaw, NC! The best kind of photographer can make you smile just with her presence–Anna certainly possesses this gift, and many more.
The site was designed by another of my favorite photographers, the brilliant mARTa Sasinowska. Several of the amazing photos she took for our annual HoopPath Retreat here in North Carolina are visible here on our Gallery page. Follow her photography on Daily i.Dose!
The multi-talented Heather Crosby designed our logo. And she not only designs like a boss, she also runs YumUniverse, a site where you can learn how to make all kinds of positively mouth-watering and totally plant-based recipes! Try the Raspberry&Cardamom Chia Pudding — aaaaaahhhh!
Our Online Class music was composed by my dear friend of many years, Kubra Coltrane. Not only an incredibly talented percussionist and composer–but also a photographer! You can’t stop a true artist! Check out her original music here— you’ll definitely, definitely be glad you did.
Napoleon Wright of Pan II Creative made our nifty little Online Class animation.
AND NOW FOR A FEW OF MY FAVORITE THINGS:
My jaw still drops when I watch this incredible video featuring Alexandra Savina of Raw Art re-interpreting the old German circus art of hoop rolling. Unbelievable.
Just in case you didn’t see my favorite (and the best) dubstep dancer in the world, Marquese Scott aka Nonstop, in the hip-hop dance link above or on youtube (where he has millions and millions of hits), I give you this link, his heart-stopping interpretation of a dubstep remix of Adele’s “Fire to the Rain.” (Just mute the ad and wait a few seconds– beyond worth it).
Another of my favorite hip-hop dancers is Storyboard P, a magic movement artist from Brooklyn, NY. He appears in this intensely affecting short film by Khalil Joseph— dancing the dance of the spirit as it leaves this world. What beauty…
This haunting dance piece is a beautiful group collaboration commissioned by the great Icelandic band Sigur Rós.